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Marking Where Dr. Joseph Warren Lived

Last weekend the Boston Globe ran a story about a proposal to mark the site of Dr. Joseph Warren’s house in Boston, depicted here. And where is that spot? As Charles Bahne determined for Warren biographer Samuel Forman a few years back, Warren’s house is under City Hall Plaza. Show More Summary

Norman Rockwell’s Franklin Up for Bid

For the sesquicentennial of American independence in 1926, the Saturday Evening Post commissioned a cover image of Benjamin Franklin. The magazine traces itself back to the Pennsylvania Gazette, which Franklin printed and published in...Show More Summary

Arbogast on “Two Domestics” in Waltham, 12 Sept.

On Tuesday, 12 September, Camille Arbogast will speak at the Lyman Estate in Waltham on “A Tale of Two Domestics: Adventures in Archival Archaeology.” This event is co-hosted by Historic New England, owner of the estate, and the Waltham Historical Society. Show More Summary

Robert E. Lee Takes Another Hit

I think it is safe to say that this has not been a good year for the memory of Robert E. Lee as well as the Confederacy. The Lost Cause […]

“Destroying all party distinctions”

As stated in a passage I quoted a couple of days ago, soon after Charles Townshend died, his post as Chancellor of the Exchequer was offered to Lord North, who accepted it on 11 September. That quick succession made the British government of the time seem more stable than it was.The leading minister in London was William Pitt, Earl of Chatham. Show More Summary

“He was the delight and ornament of this House”

Yesterday I quoted Horace Walpole’s immediate response to the death of Charles Townshend in September 1767. Townshend had a big personality full of contradictions, and he seems to have both fascinated and exasperated his political peers—who expressed themselves so handsomely. Show More Summary

“All those parts and fire are extinguished”

On 24 Aug 1767, the British politician Thomas Whatley wrote to former boss George Grenville about gossip he’d heard from yet another Member of Parliament, Grey Cooper:He told me that the Chancellor of the Exchequer [Charles Townshend,...Show More Summary

Visiting Civil War Battlefields in the Wake of Charlottesville

A good friend of mine who is a historian with the National Park Service offered this observation the other day: The present debate over Confederate iconography will, over time, fundamentally […]

Deborah Franklin’s Other Man, Benjamin Franklin’s Other Woman

For the Smithsonian, Stephen Coss, author of The Fever of 1721, explores the ups and downs of Benjamin Franklin’s relationship to Deborah Read: As every reader of Franklin’s Autobiography knows, Deborah Read first laid eyes on Benjamin...Show More Summary

The Daily Show’s Solution to the Confederate Monument Debate

I finally got around to watching The Daily Show’s recent segment on the Confederate monument debate. I particularly appreciate the suggestions from Trevor Noah and Roy Wood, Jr. on ways […]

Exploring Fault Lines in the Constitution

In the coming weeks, Cynthia and Sanford Levinson will speak in various Massachusetts venues about their new book, Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fights, and the Flaws that Affect Us Today.This book is an exploration of the U.S. Show More Summary

Solomon Davis and the Fatal Plum Cake

John and Dolly Hancock were known for hosting dinner parties in their mansion on Beacon Hill (shown here shortly before it was torn down).According to James Spear Loring’s Hundred Boston Orators (which cribbed freely from older sources),...Show More Summary

The Hancocks’ Dinner Table

Ticonderoga, New York, boasts the most accurate recreation of the Hancock mansion that used to stand on Beacon Hill. The merchant Thomas Hancock built the original and passed it to his nephew John.The replica was erected in 1925, long after the original was torn down, based on detailed architectural drawings. Show More Summary

A Response to Anonymous

First, thanks to all of you who have commented on the recent guest post in favor of maintaining Confederate monuments. A number of you have expressed concern about my decision […]

“Mr. Mason’s objection to the President’s power of pardoning”

Among George Mason’s objections to the proposed U.S. Constitution of 1787 was that it gave too much power to the President.Specifically, Mason feared that a President would abuse the power to pardon criminals. On the back of a committee...Show More Summary

Teaching Charlottesville and Confederate Monuments

For those of you looking for resources surrounding the recent events in Charlottesville and the broader Confederate monument debate, I highly recommend this lesson plan from The Choices Program. It […]

In Favor of Confederate Monuments

What follows is a guest post authored by a experienced instructor in professional military education, who wishes to remain anonymous. Publication of this piece should not be interpreted as constituting […]

New to the Civil War Memory Library, 08/29

Update: I decided to re-work my crowdsourcing project around New Orleans and the Confederate monument debate to something that better reflects the turn that the focus has taken in the […]

The Mixed Meaning of Richard Stockton

In 2008 I posted a multi-part inquiry into the legend of Richard Stockton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence from New Jersey. According to the standard story, in late 1776 the British forces captured Stockton and treated him so badly that he was in poor health until he died from the consequences in 1781. Show More Summary

“The Government of this Colledge is very Strict”

Yesterday I quoted the start of John Adams’s description of his first visit to Princeton in August 1774, when he was on his way to the First Continental Congress. Adams viewed the college’s Nassau Hall, the mansion of Judge Richard Stockton,...Show More Summary

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